To The Editor,
A book entitled “The Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family and Defiance During the Blitz 1940-41” written by Erik Larson (available at the Champlain Public Library) is a must-read for these troubled times.
Unlike the ‘defiance’ we are experiencing from those protesting vaccine ‘mandates’, hospital workers and anyone wearing masks and following the health guidelines – the wartime defiance, referred to in the title, was directed at the constant aerial bombardment of London and other cities throughout Britain. It was defiance against the daily possibility of the destruction of homes, hospitals, churches, factories. It was defiance in the face of daily death.
At the height of the bombing, entire populations were forced to take cover in the subway system. The appalling conditions were compared to those of trench warfare. Food and fuel rationing was the norm. Air raid warnings were constant. Did the citizens of London call for a blockade of the city? Did they demand the defeat of the government? Did they call for the overthrow of democracy, such as we are hearing from organizers of the occupation of Ottawa?
The despicable behavior we see each day – the desecration of the National War Memorial, the display of the Swastika, the American confederate flag, the intimidation and endangering of ordinary citizens, the breaking of the law – would have been beyond unthinkable during the Blitz.
The war-time generation before us must be hanging their heads in shame.